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Belfast Celebrates Travel Savvy Entrepreneurs

November 17, 2008

Heidi and Sinead

We were thrilled to hear our buds at Belfast In Your Pocket received some well-earned recognition recently…and we’re even more pleased the movers and shakers in Belfast are supporting tourism-friendly entrepreneurs like Heidi McAlpin and Sinead Faulkner.

Heidi and Sinead brought the In Your Pocket franchise to the Emerald Isle in 2005 and have since been publishing both the Belfast and Dublin versions for FREE both ONLINE and in PRINT. These are great before-your-trip resources.

You’ll find the guides at (just choose the city you’d like to visit). In addition to the downloadable PDF, there’s an entire archive of articles available as well. I’d be remiss if I didn’t also mention that you can also listen to our interview with Heidi at


In Your Pocket Ltd., the company behind Belfast In Your Pocket city guide, has won the Excellence in Entrepreneurship award at the prestigious Belfast Business Awards, run by Belfast City Centre Management.

The gala ceremony, hosted by the BBC’s Sarah Travers and Jim Fitzpatrick, took place last Thursday evening at the Belfast Waterfront Hall. Past and present Lord Mayors Jim Rodgers and Tom Hartley (both fans of the magazine), and MLA Margaret Richie, were among the distinguished guests as businesses across the city were recognised for their achievements over the past year. And, for the first time in the Awards’ four year history, winners received a specially commissioned ‘Nuala’ trophy representing the city’s Ring of Thanksgiving statue and designed by renowned Scottish artist Andy Scott, the man behind the original sculpture.

Belfast In Your Pocket owners Heidi McAlpin and Sinead Faulkner received their trophy from KPMG – sponsors of this hotly-contended category. “Winning this award is a fantastic achievement for our company”, said Heidi. “It is great to be honoured for our work in promoting the great city of Belfast to an international audience. With other winners also in the tourism sector, these awards underline the important role tourism plays in our local economy, despite the credit crunch.” Sinead added, “We’d like to thank everyone who has supported us – the success of our company is all down to team work and a shared passion for tourism.”

Belfast In Your Pocket was established in 2005 and, since then, In Your Pocket Ltd. has gone on to successfully launch Dublin In Your Pocket. The company will also be adding Glasgow In Your Pocket to its expanding travel guide portfolio in early 2009. The magazines are part of a successful 17-year-old European-wide group of city guides covering 54 cities in 22 countries including Prague, Krakow, Berlin and Moscow. Aimed at tourists, and available free in hotels, airports and other visitor-friendly locations, the guides can also be downloaded at – voted No. 9 in Sunday Times Travel’s Top 100 Websites.

And more than fifty In Your Pocket (IYP) travel editors from across Europe will be in Belfast on Friday 12 December for the company’s annual AGM. “It is a real vote of confidence for Belfast to be chosen as host city for the IYP AGM,” added Heidi. “The event will be featured in every In Your Pocket guide which will really boost the city’s status as one of Europe’s must-see destinations.” The delegation will be guests at a Lord Mayor’s Civic Reception and shown around the city by Belfast City Sightseeing Bus Tours, another winner in last night’s awards.

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